Mobike in German GDPR Data Breach Probe
Berlin, Germany: China’s Mobike which is owned by Chinese ecommerce company Meituan Dianping, is under investigation by the German Data Regulatory over suspicions it may have systematically breached the EU Data Regulations.
Mobike which is preparing to spin off its European arm, at a valuation of USD100 million, has 200,000 of its silver and orange bikes across six countries in Europe, operating in 23 EU cities, including London, Paris, Madrid, Milan and Rotterdam.
Since GDPR came into effect in May this year, non-compliant businesses face potential fines up to €20 million ($ 22.74 million) or 4% of their total annual turnover.
The Germany regulator is thought to be undertaking a wider investigation into bike and car sharing enterprises and how they are compliant with the EU data regulations. The concern is how the platforms, which collect significant amounts of data about their users via the mobile phone apps are handling that data.
A recent article by the head of Think Privacy AB, a Sweden-based consultancy, regarding Mobike’s data and privacy policies was highly critical of Mobike in terms of its compliance with GDPR and ePrivacy. In his article he suggested that compliance should be mandatory before public authorities allow such services to exist in Europe.
EU Proposes ‘revolutionary’ Fast-track System for Police Data Access
EU: Member countries of the EU voted on last week to give to law enforcement authorities, greater powers in gathering evidence held on technology platforms within the European Union. The e-evidence proposal still needs to pass the European Parliament, after which lawmakers, EU governments and the EC will negotiate on the details before it becomes legislation.
The proposed legislation which was originally drafted in April this year requires companies holding data to respond to police requests within ten days – or six hours in case of emergency (compared to up to 120 days for the existing European Investigation Order) – with fines up to two per cent of global turnover non-compliance. Member states would also be able to require service providers in another EU state to preserve specific data on request.
The proposal covers telecoms services providers, online marketplaces and internet infrastructure services providers and applies to subscriber data and other data on access, transactional and content.
Google designates Ireland as EU Data Location
The update is set to take effect in January 2019, and the company says the change won’t impact any features or operation of its services in Europe. For users living in the European Economic Area and Switzerland, the company’s subsidiary in Dublin — Google Ireland Limited — will simply become the official “service provider.”
The changes can be seen as move by Google to utilize the GDPR’s ‘One Stop Shop’ mechanism, which was created to ensure consistency of regulatory decisions for companies.
Oxford AR Start-up Raises USD 25.6 Million
Oxford, England: WaveOptics, an augmented reality start-up has raised GBP20 million (USD 25.6 million) in a funding round.
The company which was founded in 2014, designs and manufactures diffractive waveguides for AR wearables at a cheaper price point than currently available.
UK venture capital firm, Octopus Ventures led the round with participation from IP Group, Robert Bosch Venture Capital, Gobi Partners, Goertek, and Optimas Capital Partners.
WaveOptics is planning to use the fresh funding for scaling up its operations and international expansion. This year, the company opened offices in Los Angeles and Taipei; it also plans to launch another one in Beijing in 2019.
Munich spatial intelligence start-up raises $35.5 million
Munich, Germany; NavVis, a German start-up raised USD35.5 million in a Series C funding round. The company is developing indoor spatial intelligence for enterprises to provide insight into physical spaces.
Founded in 2013, NavVis has offices in Munich, New York, and Shanghai. The company stated that its technology has been used to scan and visualise more than 150 million m² for clients such as Daimler, Lenovo, and Deutsche Telekom.
The funding round was led by Digital+ Partners, with additional participation from new investor Kozo Keikaku Engineering and existing investors MIG, Target Partners, and BayBG.
Nokia Gets €250 Million 5G R&D Loan
Espoo, Finland: Nokia, the Finnish telecommunications company has secured the funding it has been seeking for some time to fund its 5G research. Nordic Investment Bank has agreed to provide the company with Eur 250 million (USD 285 million).
Nokia will use the funding will for its research and development related to 5G products until 2020, concentrating particularly on “developing new 5G-related end-to-end product offerings for different business areas,” the company stated in a press release. The loan has an average life of five years after the payment is made.
Nokia’s 5G research and development plan is said to focus on the implementation of IoT-related services, which allow for communication between different appliances, sensors, and actuators.